The Oklahoma State Department of Health has joined public health officials in other states and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to investigate a nationwide foodborne outbreak of Salmonella Poona. Epidemiologic studies of these Salmonellosis cases have implicated garden-variety cucumbers distributed by Andrew & Williamson of San Diego, CA as the cause of the outbreak. As of September 4, 2015, the CDC reports a total of 285 cases in 27 states linked to this outbreak. Seven cases of the outbreak strain of Salmonella Poona have been identified in Oklahoma.
Garden-variety cucumbers are the most common variety found in the grocery store; they are plump, smooth, dark green skinned, 7-10 inches long, and are usually waxed. These contaminated products were distributed to grocery stores and restaurants throughout the United States. For the current list of the stores and retail establishments that purchase cucumbers from Andrew & Williamson, please visit the webpage at the link below. This list may be updated in the future.
On September 4, 2015, Andrew & Williamson voluntarily recalled all cucumbers sold under the label “Limited Edition” from August 1 through September 3.
Contaminated garden-variety cucumbers may still be in grocery stores, restaurants, and in consumer’s homes. Recommendations for consumers:
· Oklahomans having purchased cucumbers for which they do not know the source should either discard the cucumbers or contact the store of purchase to determine the distributer.
· Oklahomans having cucumbers known to have been purchased from a store selling cucumbers distributed by Anderson & Williamson should not consume them.
· If you have cucumbers, but do not know where the cucumbers came from, do not eat but discard the cucumbers.
Symptoms of salmonellosis will generally appear within 6 – 72 hours after consumption of a contaminated food. The symptoms of salmonellosis include: diarrhea, fever, abdominal pain, headache, muscle aches, nausea and sometimes vomiting. Blood is sometimes seen in the stool. The illness usually lasts four to seven days, but may last up to two weeks. In rare cases, Salmonella bacteria may enter the bloodstream. People with compromised immune systems, infants less than one year old, and the elderly are more likely to experience severe or prolonged illness. OSDH recommends that Oklahomans having concerns regarding symptoms they are experiencing should contact their personal physician.